Quantitative AFM methods of measuring local mechanical and electric properties are based on knowing the probe characteristics and microscope performance, which is a non-trivial issue in existing scanning probe microscopes. We were not satisfied with the existing tools to do this, so we have developed the Dynamic Cantilever Calibrator to measure the spring constant and inverse optical sensitivity. This accessory also serves as a valuable diagnostic tool for measurements of the instrument noise floor (in fm/√Hz) and pre-amplifier frequency response in the broad frequency range. The current version of the Dynamic Cantilever Calibrator is for use with MultiMode*™ and Dimension*™ scanning probe microscopes.

The DCC is a tool to quickly and accurately calibrate the spring constant of the cantilever and the inverse optical sensitivity without touching the sample.  For use on Bruker/Veeco/DI MultiMode and  Dimension Microscopes.

The primary idea of the new controller development was boosting the functionality of scanning probe microscopes. MultiMode and Dimension (Bruker Corp) are the most popular instruments in research laboratories worldwide. Mechanical and functional designs of the microscopes have proved their unbeatable operation for 20+ years, yet the overall performance of these devices became outdated as the means of electronic and software instrument control have substantially advanced. Now this shortcoming is overcome with the introduction of the “Phoenix” controller made by SPM Labs.

In the development of the controller the initial intention has been extended and the flexible design of the “Phoenix” allows its interfacing with other commercial and home-made microscopes. The implementations of FPGA-based digital control, high-speed data acquisition capabilities and software innovations offer superb AFM functionality.

By combining the FPGA-based “Phoenix” controller with their microscopes, a user will have access to 5 major AFM modes. They include Contact Mode (CM), resonant oscillatory modes: Amplitude Modulation with Phase Imaging – AM-PI (tapping mode), Amplitude Modulation with Frequency Imaging (AM-FI), Frequency Modulation with Amplitude Imaging (FM-AI), and non-resonance oscillatory mode – Dynamic Contact Mode (D-CM). Latest addition is Scanning Thermal Noise Microscopy, which is based on tracking of no-excitation contact resonances. All these modes have a large number of off-springs dedicated to quantitative studies of mechanical, electrical, thermal and other properties.

 Open software architecture provides unlimited capabilities for customers, who are interested in their own developments or modifications of hardware and software. 


Atomic force microscopy (AFM) is a microscopic method for visualization of surfaces with high-resolution and for studies of local materials’ properties. 

* MultiMode is Trademark of Bruker

© SPM Labs LLC.

Advanced SPM Controller “Phoenix”